The Liberia National Police (LNP) arrested over 50 officers in the streets of Monrovia January 15 for harassment and escaping assignment; they were subsequently suspended.
According to the spokesman for the LNP, Sam Collins, the arrest of the officers comes in the wake of calls from the general public complaining that police officers were constantly harassing peaceful citizens.
Mr. Collins explained that some of the arrested officers were not from the LNP; rather they were imposters from the Monrovia City Police wearing LNP uniforms and harassing citizens.
“The police have received several complaints from the general public about officers constantly harassing them in the streets while carrying on their business activities.”
He explained that a few bad apples in the mix could taint the good ones. An exercise ordered by Col. Massaquoi of the LNP during the festive season is ongoing.
According to the spokesman, the arrested officers will be turned over to the legal division of the LNP for prosecution in accordance with the crimes committed.
Mr. Collins said the officers of the Monrovia City Police who were found wearing uniforms of the LNP would be turned over to the city cooperation for prosecution.
He explained that in 2012, the LNP prosecuted two officers who violated the law of the police and were currently serving their sentences at the Monrovia central prison.
Mr. Collins said officers who are found in the habit of escaping from assignment would be prosecuted by the LNP.
According to him the collaboration of the LNP with the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) was intended to speedily fight crime in the country for the good of the citizens.
He promised citizens that misconduct within the LNP would not be compromised and that the safety of the state remains the primary concern of the LNP.
Mr. Collins also assured citizens that working with the police in their various communities creates relationships that help to reduce crime.